KEIGHLEY Cougars have announced the signing of Robert Matamosi, with the Fijian winger arriving at Cougar Park on a one-year deal from the West Wales Raiders.

Playing rugby union growing up in his native Fiji, Matamosi had never played a game of rugby league until experiencing the sport for the first time in 2016 after relocating to the United Kingdom to join the British Army as a logistics engineer.

A string of impressive performances in the Army side caught the eye of the Raiders, who signed the winger last year.

Despite the struggles of West Wales on the field, Matamosi continued to impress and went viral on social media with a breath-taking 80 metre effort in defeat at Doncaster earlier this year.

Clubs have been fighting hard to capture the 23-year-old for the 2021 season, with the Cougars beating off interest from Championship clubs to secure his signature.

Head coach Rhys Lovegrove said of his second new addition for next year: “Not only has Robert got the talent, but more importantly he has the drive and ambition to become the best rugby league player he can be, both on and off the field.

“I like to think outside of the box with my recruitment process and there are talented players at expansion clubs that some of the traditional heartland clubs tend to not pay attention to.

“In the action we saw before lockdown, Dalton (Desmond-Walker) proved that and I’m hoping Robert will do the same once we return to action in 2021.”

Chairman Mick O’Neill added: “Robert is an electric player with pace to burn on the wing and I hope that along with both Mo Agoro and Taylor Prell, he will go very well. We are excited by the competition for places this will now present in that position.

“Being a Fijian who serves in the British Army, Robert will also add a level of discipline and composure that will complement Rhys’ style of play and both the squad and environment we are building here at Cougar Park.

“I had the pleasure of meeting Robert on Saturday. It was good to see him and show him around Cougar Park and the town of Keighley.

“It is a very exciting time for the club both on and off the field, Robert was impressed by what he saw and especially enjoyed the coffee bar in the market!”

As a part of the deal that sees Matamosi arrive at Cougar Park, the winger will be transferred to the Catterick Garrison barracks in North Yorkshire in order to allow him to continue his service with the armed forces while playing for the club.

Matamosi said of his decision to join Keighley: “I’m looking forward to playing some good rugby next season and getting to meet the lads.

“I’ll be playing alongside some great experienced players in the side and can’t wait to take to the field with them in front of the Cougars fans, who I’ve heard nothing but great things about and can’t wait to meet.

“I am very grateful to Rhys, Mick and the management of the club for giving me the opportunity to come up to the rugby league heartlands and develop my skills while playing for a famous and established club.”